Russia's foreign minister has hinted that the delay in delivering air-defense missiles to Iran is connected with concerns about regional tensions.
Russia signed a contract in 2007 to sell S-300 missiles to Iran, a move that would substantially boost the country's defense capacities. Israel fears the sale would tip the regional power balance.
Russian officials said none of the missiles have been delivered, but have been evasive about the reason.
But Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Wednesday said when asked about the delivery that Russia never takes "any actions leading to the destabilization of this or that region. All deliveries of Russian weapons abroad come follow the need to strictly respect this principle."
The Russian foreign minister also said a high-level meeting of the Middle East Quartet will take place in Moscow next month.
The quartet consists of Russia, the United States, the European Union and the United Nations, and is seeking strategies for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Lavrov said the March 19 meeting will be at the ministerial level.
He made the announcement Wednesday at a news conference with EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton.